Disability-Based UCAS Applications
If you have a disability or a number of learning difficulties you should contact your university choices ahead of submitting the form to discuss any concerns.
Most institutions have their own advisors, coordinators or officers to help you throughout your application, interview and university life once you start. The disability advisor will talk you through what the college or university can offer you for help and can set up a separate interview to discuss any issues you may have. During this interview, it is best to ask to speak to teachers individually about how they can meet the requirements that you will need during their classes.
Should I write about my disability in my personal statement?
This decision is entirely up to you. There is not a right or wrong answer. If you are considering mentioning your disability in your statement, a great way to talk about it is if it has helped you overcome certain issues or has had a positive effect on your studies. If you are unsure, remember, it is entirely your decision and you are not inclined to discuss your disability or learning difficulty.
What is a Disabled Students’ Allowance (DSA)?
DSA is paid to you to cover any extra costs or requirements you may need to help you with your studying. This can include, office supplies, a particular computer programme, a non-medical helper, Braille paper, extra travel costs, etc.
Am I eligible for DSA?
If you are going to study a full-time course for at least one year, a part-time course for at least one year, and if you eligible for student loans from the Student Loans company, you can apply for DSA from the same time you are applying for your UCAS application.
Who is not eligible for DSA?
If you are eligible for an NHS bursary you are unable to claim for DSA by the Student Loans Finance England or your local authority. You also do not qualify if you are a postgraduate receiving a research council bursary or award, a social work bursary from the NHS Business Services Authority, or a bursary or award from your institution. But you should contact help regarding your bursary or award for further information, advice or extra support you may be entitled to because of a disability or a particular learning difficulty.
When can I apply for DSA?
You can apply for DSA before or during your course. Although it is extremely benefiting to let your college or university know as soon as possible so they can meet your specific learning requirements and make your time studying as comfortable as possible. If you have a medical condition, impairment, illness or a mental health condition then you will have to provide medical proof of this. If you have a learning difficulty you will need a ‘diagnostic assessment’ from a psychologist or a qualified specialist teacher.
How much help am I entitled to?
Each student applying for DSA is assessed individually for their needs and support. There are a number of allowances that you can be entitled to Specialist Equipment Allowance, Non-Medical Helpers Allowance, General Allowance and travel costs.
To find out what your university or college can do to help you and your studies, contact them directly or speak to a disability advisor.